Manchester United Player Ratings vs Fulham (January 20, 2021)

Posted By Uttiyo Sarkar on January 20, 2021

Manchester United are looking to get back to winning ways and retain their spot at the top of the Premier League against newly-promoted side Fulham. They were able to do just that with a 2-1 win thanks to a Paul Pogba special. The game went off to a rough start for United, who conceded within the first 5 minutes when Ademola Lookman broke the offside trap to score the opener for the hosts. 

But the Red Devils bit back quickly, with Edinson Cavani tapping home the equalizer in the 21st minute thanks to an error from Fulham goalkeeper Alphonse Areola. United continued to hunt for the second and received it thanks to an incredible long-ranger from Pogba in the 65th to get the Red Devils into the lead. 

United were able to keep their lead and secure another comeback win away from home, their 7th such victory in the league already this season! They look determined to at least be here in the title race and go into an important FA Cup game against Liverpool full of confidence after this big win. 

Here are Manchester United player ratings vs Fulham

Manchester United Player Ratings vs Fulham

Manager

Ole Gunnar Solskjaer (7.0) –  

Solskjaer was brave to start Pogba-Fred in a midfield pivot today and going with Greenwood instead of Rashford today. But his decisions eventually paid off, as United maintained an incredibly high intensity all game long and looked extremely capable of securing the comeback win after going down. 

Perhaps he could’ve timed his subs better today and still needs a solution to United’s issues playing through the right-side, but the way Ole’s motivated this side to grind out the win was admirable. Needs to ensure that his players maintain a winning run for a longer period now. 

Goalkeeper

David de Gea (7.0) –  

The Spaniard’s unable to get his 3rd successive clean sheet in the PL, conceding early on when Lookman’s powerful shot skated past him. But makes a clutch save in the 75th to deny Loftus-Cheek. That eventually helped seal the win for United and De Gea played his part in this important win as well. 

Defenders

Aaron Wan-Bissaka (5.5) –

Poor start to the game for Wan-Bissaka, who was the one to play Lookman onside for his goal. Looks so clumsy today, botching his touches, getting out of position defensively & overhitting his crosses. He improved his work in the second half and put in some great tackles on the right. But this topsy-turvy game from him proved there’s still lots to improve for AWB. 

Harry Maguire (7.0) –  

The United captain looks reasonably comfortable dealing with Fulham’s counter-attacks and making timely challenges to thwart their efforts. Fluffed a free header wide around the half-hour mark to waste the chance to put his side in the lead. Defensively, he didn’t raise questions and thwarted whatever Fulham threw into the box. Another solid away performance form Maguire. 

Eric Bailly (6.5) –  

Bailly’s back into the team after missing the Liverpool game. He dealt perfectly with Fulham’s counter-attacking threat, stopping a number of potential chances with his crunching challenges. Almost had a hand-in-mouth moment late on when a shot nearly deflected off him into the net, but apart from that blooper, Bailly put in another commendable performance on the road. 

Luke Shaw (7.5) –  

Shaw’s continuing his good form in this game, dominating the left-flank and looking much improved with his final delivery. Put in some great crosses into the area in the first half, but none were converted. He maintained his great work even after United took the lead, helping his side sustain the late pressure and making some clutch challenges towards the end. Another superb display from the ever-improving Shaw. 

Midfielders

Fred (7.0) –

Denied a clear penalty in the 10th minute when pummeled inside the area by Ruben Loftus-Cheek. Looks really sharp with his movement and much more creative with his forward passing. Linked-up Bruno really well to help create Cavani’s goal too.  Fred’s energy once again helped keep up a high tempo for United and pressed Fulham’s midfielders brilliantly to ensure his side dominated the midfield battle. 

Paul Pogba (8.5) –

Looks confident after a bright run of form but needs to put in more of a defensive effort today. Trying to get more involved into the action, but unable to create anything special in the first half. Then pulls off the extraordinary in the second half, taking an incredible shot with his weaker left foot from a very difficult angle to give his side the lead. 

Apart from that world-class strike, Pogba’s defensive work today was again brilliant as he supported Fred well in midfield. Moved the ball around well and again decisive in another away win for his side. That performance was worthy of £85m. 

Bruno Fernandes (7.5) –

Bruno is goalless in 4 games (in all competitions) now and wants to break that streak. Hits the bar with a vicious shot in the 20th, but showcased impressive determination to quickly recover from that and whip in a powerful cross to force the equalizer.

Then almost gets his goal in the 23rd, when his powerful attempt from outside the area is saved. Almost got another assist for Cavani, when his perfect cross for the striker saw his attempt saved well. Despite being unable to break his goal-scoring drought, Bruno was again at the heart of another comeback win, with his never-say-die attitude & positive thinking taking United forward all the time. 

Forwards

Anthony Martial (5.0) –

The Frenchman looks a bit nervous at the intensity of the game and isn’t able to make the dribble runs he’d like to. Got a decent scoring chance in the 43rd, but overpowered his header over the post. But his overall work today was disappointing again. Misplaced simple passes, couldn’t get a proper shot on goal and just didn’t look hungry enough to make a difference. 

Mason Greenwood (5.0) –

Greenwood gets his opportunity to impress, replacing Rashford today. While his link-up play has been decent, the youngster doesn’t seem to have the confidence to do that something special in the final third. Ineffective in the right-wing role again. 

Edinson Cavani (8.0) –

The Uruguayan gets a start after a decent cameo at Anfield. Gets an easy goal thanks to Areola failing to hold onto Bruno’s cross. Almost got his second int he 66th, but his powerful header from close forced a super save from Areola.

Cavani’s work-rate was once again top-notch, as he showcased the determination to go the extra mile into pressing the Fulham players and helping his side recover possession. His movement was superb, as was his link-up play in the final third. Playing in a front-3 with players much younger than him, El Matador played like he was the youngest. 

Substitutions

Marcus Rashford (6.0) –

The winger came late into the game and threatened with his movement, but unable to do really anything in the late cameo. 

Scott McTominay (6.0) –

The Scotsman helped his side see off the game towards the end. 

Nemanja Matic (N/R) –

Came on only with a minute or so to go and helped United get the win. 

MAN OF THE MATCH

Both the goalscorers today played huge roles in the win, but Pogba gets my MOTM today just for that sensational goal itself. 

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Uttiyo Sarkar

An unbiased Manchester United die-hard. Lover of the beautiful game. Addicted to the Premier League and beyond. Hopeful writer in the search for the greater good.

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